A couple of weeks ago I lucky enough to receive a swathe of new hand tools from the iconic Australian company Cyclone tools. Cyclone have a long history in Australia and have been around for more than 100 years and are makers of quality tools, several of which I personally own and use.
Info provided by Cyclone tools
Cyclone's new 'Sculpt' range of shears and loppers offers gardeners more power for less effor, comfortable grip and stylish design. The range comprises two new hedge shears and three loppers, and includes Telescopic models for those hard-to-reach brances and stems. 'Sculpt' shears and loppers features transitional aluminium handles, soft-touch and wide-palm grips. Its 100% non-stick blades offer friction free cutting, rust resistance, durability and lasting sharpness. 'Sculpt is available at Bunnings Warehouse, comes with a lifetime guarantee and is priced from $49.98 to $87.
To review these tools I puts them all through their paces over several jobs and as it is now spring here in Australia the timing for testing these tools is ideal. I used the hedge trimmers on a Viburnum hedge, a Photinia hedges, a Cypress hedge and several shrubs, they performed wonderfully. The telescopic handles on the wavy hedge trimmers did the trick for trimming high areas. I used the loppers to prune several different trees and they cut through branches of up to 35mm quite easily. I particularly liked the grips and I also liked the handle length on all the loppers.
Whilst all the tools in the sculpt range were of good quality and performed functionally well there were two in particular that in my opinion really stood out as the best of the bunch.
CYCLONE Sculpt Hedge Shears
The first of these was the standard hedge shears. I've used lots of different types of hedge shears over the years and I can tell you that hedge shears vary from company to company and some shears are more suitable for certain plants than others. The standard shears in the sculpt range are the type of shears that excel in relatively light hedge trimming (for hedges with thicker branching consider the telescopic shears that provide more power through their longer handles). The sculpt hedge trimmers had a nice light and whippy action. For some reason I really prefer the straight blade shears over the wavy blades for light and precise work. These shears would be fantastic for anyone who is a topiary enthusiast or somebody who likes sharpening the edges of a standard hedge.
CYCLONE Sculpt Ratchet Anvil Lopper
I have worked with several gardeners (one who has more experience than me) who to my surprise have never used an anvil lopper. Anybody who hasn't used a pair of anvil loppers should really give some a try to appreciate their power and usefulness in the garden. As opposed to bypass loppers (which are essentially massive secateurs), anvil loppers consist of a blade that comes down into the center of a metal surface called the anvil which makes them more powerful than bypass loppers. The people at Cyclone must be psychic because my last pair of anvil loppers which were of another brand had become so lose that I stopped using them. The Sculpt anvil loppers were nice and tight with a nice handle length. They have a ratchet mechanism which multiplies their cutting strength making them a real beast of a tool. I cut through several 35mm woody branches with them and they worked like a charm. These anvil loppers enabled me to cut through hard and woody branches that I without them would require me to use my hand pruning saw.
If you are in the marked for some new pruning tools consider the Sculpt range from Cyclone. Cyclone are still an Australian company so get out there and support them and in return you will get some quality tools.
The telescopic wavy edge hedge shears were good for tougher hedges with thicker branching.
The compound bypass loppers
The telescopic ratchet bypass loppers were great for high branches.
The straight edge hedge shears giving an English box shrub some shape
The straight edge hedge shears working a cypress hedge